Boosted by its first court conviction since it started filing cases against smugglers in 2005, when Vill Gay Forwarding Services owner Danilo R. Villar and his customs broker Danilo L. Opiniano were found guilty by a Manila Regional Trial Court for violations of certain provisions of the Tariff and Customs Code of the Philippines and sentenced to suffer the penalty of imprisonment for a period of eight (8) years and one day to nine (9) years last July 12, 2012,Â the Bureau of Customs (BOC) Run-After-The Smugglers (RATS) today, in its sustained anti- smuggling campaign, hasÂ again filed smuggling charges against six persons at the Department of Justice (DOJ).
Led by Customs Commissioner Ruffy Biazon, the Customs officials chargedÂ JV&A Enterprises owner Alejandro Alberto Milanes of Bangkal Davao City, together with Cebu’s Total Golden Motor Care, Inc. officials headed by its President Chui Myung Jong , SecretaryÂ Johanna A. Lariosa, and Directors Lee Mee Lee, Felimer Lee and Godofredo Gimongala for smuggling and attempting to smuggle 23 assorted vehicles with a total estimated value of over Php18 million.
“The recent conviction of Villar and Opiniano has encouraged us to strive even more in the fight against smuggling. Â And today/s filing of smuggling cases against these car importers is proof of our determination to curb smuggling in the country,” Biazon said, adding that “We will spare no one in our campaign against smuggling, no matter who are the people behind it.”
According to Biazon, Milanes’ two (2) forty container vans which arrived at the Mindanao Container Terminal at Tagoloan, Misamis Oriental in May and June last year and found to containÂ two Mercedez Benz vehicles, a Ford Explorer 4×4, a Dodge Durango,Â four (4) Toyota Vitz, Starex and Sorento among other vehicles,Â were misdeclared as used industrial equipment. Milanes’ shipment had a total value of Php13 million. On the other hand, the nine imported vehicles of various brands that were parked at the Total Golden Motor Care, Inc. office at Mabolo Cebu with a total value of Php5 million, were found to have been illegally imported for not having the required import permit.
The seizures of said vehicles were all initiated by BOC Enforcement Group operative under Deputy Commissioner for Enforcement Group (EG) Horacio P. Suansing Jr.
“These apprehensions are results of our enhanced monitoring efforts in the country’s various ports,” Suansing said.
For his part, Deputy Commissioner for Revenue Collection and Monitoring Group (RCMG) and RATS Head Peter Manzano said, “We will also aggressively pursue to get a conviction on the cases we have filed today.”